While striving to improve your site’s search engine optimization (SEO) and conversion rates, you will come across the term “bounce rate.”
What is bounce rate, and how does reducing it improve your website’s performance? Read on to learn exactly what your bounce rate entails, and how you can use Jetpack tools to reduce it.
What your bounce rate reveals
A bounce rate is the rate at which users leave your site after visiting a single page. If your page has a 100% bounce rate, then not a single one of your site visitors is navigating elsewhere on your site from that particular page. Instead, they’re leaving your site altogether.
If your page has a 0% bounce rate, then every person who visits a particular page on your site is clicking an internal link and navigating to another page on your site.
For most pages, you’ll want a bounce rate that’s as close to 0% as possible.
Why your bounce rate matters
So, why should you worry about whether people are navigating away from your site after visiting one of your pages?
It’s important to monitor your bounce rate. The more pages and content that people consume, the more likely they are to take specific actions like making purchases, filling out a contact form, or bookmarking your site for later.
Although not unheard of, it’s quite rare for a first-time site visitor to become a customer or loyal fan after visiting a single page of your website. This is why you want to prevent visitors from “bouncing” away from your site, as it keeps them from exploring further and taking an action that might lead them to become fans or customers (which is what we call a conversion).
How to reduce your bounce rate
You can reduce a bounce rate by improving your site’s navigation and user experiences (UX). Here are some of the tools that you can try:
Within your posts, include internal links to related or popular content, like this post that features tips for getting visitors to stay on your website longer. You can enable Related Posts in your Jetpack settings. Jetpack will scan your content to find posts about similar topics, inserting their links at the ends of each post to supply visitors with more material to read. You can even specify whether you want to use text links or images to display your related posts.
The Top Posts & Pages Widget works in a similar way, but instead of directing users to other posts that are related to the one they’re currently viewing, it gives them a list of the most popular content on your site. This is the content that people have enjoyed reading, so adding links to it in your sidebar can encourage new readers to stick around.
Use Infinite Scroll to display an unlimited number of posts on your main blog page or archive pages. Infinite Scroll works similarly to Pinterest or Instagram’s infinite grid of images. Readers can endlessly scroll through your content without needing to leave that same page.
Use prominent share buttons and calls to action to encourage people to share the pages on your site that are most important for conversions (like your “Buy Now” page). Sharing will open up your content for engagement and will also help you reach new audience members. Users who share your content to their own social media accounts are generally fans of your content, and are more likely to view your other pages. You can activate social sharing links in your Jetpack settings and they’ll be automatically added to all of your posts.
Activate these tools to increase your visitor engagement, and tackle your bounce rate across a variety of channels.
Reduce your bounce rate for an effective website
You want each site visitor to stick around long enough to view multiple pages and a lot of content, as this increases the likelihood that they’ll become a customer or a fan. By following the tips above and testing Jetpack’s features, you’ll be on the right path to best serve your audience while decreasing your bounce rate.